Queho Posse Chapter


E Clampus Vitus


Steamboats on the River, Lake Mead, NV

June 16, 2007


In Honor of the Sixth Sailing


Of the Internationally Known and Renowned Queho Posse's


Queho'st Gaurd,


Of the Ancient and Honorable Order of


E Clampus Vitus™


Conducted June 16, 6012


Under the Illumined Leadership of


Noble Grand Humbug Gary "601" Buyachek,


his Humbugliness presents this keepsake


Intended to present the facts of the matter of the


Subject of this year's sailing


"Steamboats on the Colorado River"


Produced in editorial consultation and typographic cooperation/h3>

with Obfuscationist Enterprises, for the education, edification,


editorialization, and affectation of the assembled brothers of


E Clampus Vitus


Obfuscationist Press






When gold was discovered in 1848 the face of the West was forever changed. Though explorers, mountain men, and traders had all brought stories of the far land, they only enticed some to explore and some to shake their heads in disbelief of their so-called tall tales.


What stories of beaver, buffalo, geysers and the highest mountain peaks could not do, gold did! Those who sought the precious yellow metal went en masse and for nearly 50 years after gold was discovered steamboats provided some of the cheapest and most efficient form of transportation. The Missouri, Columbia, Sacramento and the Colorado rivers became thoroughfares to the opening of the west.


For the Colorado River, navigation began in 1850 when a Dr. Lincoln, coming west from Arkansas to the gold fields in California, went broke at the site of the later Yuma Crossing. He decided to start a ferry operation at the site, and within a short time had acquired, perhaps against his will, a partner named John Glanton, a well-known scalp hunter from Texas. Glanton brought a cutthroat band of scalp hunters with him, and on April 23, 1850, the Yuma Indians attacked the new ferry, killing most of the whites at the site. Three survivors made it to San Diego, and troops were called out to deal with the Yumas.


When twenty-four-year-old George Alonzo Johnson learned about the ferry being available, he brought together some partners and sailed from San Francisco to establish a new ferry at the site. One of the survivors of the earlier group had been widely quoted as saying the group had cleared about $60,000 in three months of operation. Along with his partners, Johnson built a stockade and two ferryboats under the watchful but wary eyes of the Yuma Indians, eventually staring the Chief of the Yumas down in a tense encounter. Johnson told the Chief that he would be the first to die if the Yumas attacked, and they eventually left. Have driven off earlier groups, Johnson's stand allowed his effort to be successful. Later that year, federal troops moved in to establish a military post at the crossing to protect overland travelers. On December 1, 1850, Major Sam Heintzleman set up Camp Independence six miles below the ferry.


Over the next few months the Major kept his eye on the ferry business and decided he wanted a piece of the action. In March 1851 he established a new post named Fort Yuma which surprisingly, except to the Major, usurped the land Johnson's corral sat on. This did not make Johnson particularly happy and he protested. However, the protest fell on deaf ears and Major Heintzelman suggested he sell out to George Hyde. With the writing on the wall, and the fact that the profits had been nowhere close to what William Carr, the survivor of the earlier attempt, had said was made by the ferry, Johnson sold out for $3000.00 and a mule and left the area. Johnson would return a year later to fulfill his dream on the river.


After Fort Yuma was established supplies were needed. As overland travel was slow and costly, this encouraged the growth of marine navigation on the Colorado. The first attempt was made by the schooner Invincible, commanded by Captain Alfred H. Wilcox. Though the Captain was in charge, he appointed a young lieutenant to bring 10,000 rations to the fort. Lieutenant George Horatio Derby eager to prove himself to his Captain procured a map to locate the fort. Unfortunately, the map was drawn in 1826 by Lieutenant R. W. H. Hardy of the British Royal Navy, who was searching for pearling grounds in the Gulf of California, and was not detailed beyond the mouth of the river.


Derby with his cargo and inaccurate map set sail on Christmas Eve 1850 to supply the fort and his quest for Clamper immortality. The schooner was only able to sail thirty miles up river, and Derby had to take a "pulling boat" for the further journey. As he headed up river in search of the fort, Derby took a wrong turn and mistook a slough for the main channel of the Colorado and the Colorado for the Gila River. Thinking he was near the fort, but not being able to see it, Lt. Derby had his soldiers fire their weapons for the men at the Fort to hear.


Alas, the soldiers of Fort Yuma did not hear the guns. The confident Lt. Derby, believing the fort was nearby, was actually 120 miles away. At this time Captain Wilcox was becoming discouraged with his young lieutenant, sent some Cocapah Indians to find the fort. The Indians were able to locate Fort Yuma and its commanding officer, Major Heintzleman, sent troops to get the much-needed supplies from the ship.


For those who are not familiar with George Horatio Derby, he later became a writer and used the pseudonyms John Phoenix and John P. Squibob, the latter providing the sobriquet for a chapter of the ancient and honorable order of E Clampus Vitus which covers the counties of Imperial and San Diego in California. On a side note Derby found his way west due to a task he was given by Secretary of War Jefferson Davis. Derby was to go to Alabama to survey the Tombigbee River and see how far up it ran. After a thorough and complete survey Derby reported the river does not run up but down. Davis was not amused and the young officer found himself being transferred west.


Captain James Turnbull made a reality of steamboat navigation on the Colorado by launching the Uncle Sam in November 1852. Turnbull had a contract with the Army to supply river forts and had shipped the parts of the small steamship in the hold of the Capacity. The small steamer was assembled at Yuma. Witnessed by Cocopah Indians, smoke belched from her stack, sparks popped from her firebox and the engine shuddered and clanked. One could only wonder what the Indians thought seeing this strange and unusual floating craft.


The Uncle Sam was not an unqualified success, however. It had only a twenty horsepower engine, and could haul only 35 tons of supplies at a time. It took 14 days for the trip from Yuma to the mouth of the Colorado initially, though this was shaved to 12 days. It took seven months for the Capacity to be unloaded. Turnbull than left to get a larger engine for the 65 foot long, 16 foot wide boat, but the Uncle Sam was lost at its moorings in 1853 when it was holed by a drifting timber before he was able to return.


In 1858, the next step was taken in proving the possibilities of shipping on the Colorado River, when Captain Johnson reached the mouth of a canyon he named Eldorado and the mouth of the Las Vegas wash. Within a few months, Lieutenant Ives, in the iron hulled Explorer, reached the Black Canyon, even further up river. These two voyages showed that, at high water and with a shallow draft vessel, shipping was possible nearly 500 miles upriver from Yuma.


However, during the 1850s and early 1860s, steamships were used mainly on the lower Colorado. Then in April 1861 Johnny Moss a fur trapper, with a gift of gab that could subdue a grizzly, discovered a rich silver strike in Eldorado Canyon. Moss located several claims, the richest would be the Techatticup and Queen City, after having been shown their location by a Native American living in the Eldorado Canyon. Not one to keep quiet Moss announced his strike and the rush was on. By the end of 1863 there was more than a dozen mining strikes covering an area the size of New England, starting from Fort Yuma to Eldorado Canyon.


With these strikes steamships became a bonanza business going up and down the river. With overland teamsters demanding $250.00 a ton for overland shipping from Los Angeles to forts in the Mojave and along the Colorado River, the steamships could haul freight for half that, thus securing a monopoly on the trade. By the fall of 1864 there were five steamships running on the river. The amount of freight was not enough to keep all the ships busy all of the time. The steamship companies looked north to Utah.


Freighting between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City was a three million dollar a year business. The use of steamboats would cut the overland route in half and the cost of overland freight by a third. George Johnson made a bid to haul freight for $65.00 a ton upriver as far as Eldorado Canyon. His chief competitor Captain Thomas Trueworthy offered to land freight to the Las Vegas Wash.


Brigham Young, always wanting a sea route to Zion, sent Anson Call to select a site for a landing and to build a warehouse. On December 17, 1864, Anson Call, having left his six wives at home, found a suitable location and modestly named it Callville. Unfortunately low water impeded steamboats from reaching Callville until the summer of 1866, when high water came again to the Colorado.


On October 8, 1866, the Esmeralda, owned by Captain Trueworthy, landed at Callville after a three-month struggle. The main reasons for the length of the trip were the lack of firewood, which meant insufficient power to head upriver, and the fact that the river was only deep enough for two months of the year, even in the best of years, to reach that far north. The engine of the Esmeralda was also inadequate when traversing Roaring Rapids and a ringbolt had to be set in the canyon wall to assist the steamship upriver. Today, this area is known as Ringbolt Rapids. Remnants of the ringbolts can still be seen in the canyon walls.


The Esmeralda proved it could be done but the victory did not last long for Captain Trueworthy. With the lack of people at Callville, there were few buyers for his cargo. Callville never grew into a community, and the Colorado River never proved a route for Mormons returning from their overseas homes to the promised land of Utah. In fact, the only substantial building at the site was the warehouse used to store the goods from the Esmeralda. Goods from this first run were still in storage at Callville as late as January 1867, when they were finally sold to merchants in Salt Lake City who moved them overland from Callville north to Utah's capital. Trueworthy's steamship company was deeply in debt and when the Esmeralda returned downriver for another load of cargo at Fort Yuma she was seized by the sheriff and given to her creditors. The boat was tied up at Fort Yuma for over a year while the creditors tried to start up a new company but were unable to. The boat was finally sold to George Johnson and the rivalry on the river came to an end. Johnson had a monopoly on the river for the next ten years.


Steamboat captains earned $200.00 a month, which was good pay at the time. Their crews consisted of an engineer ($160.00 to $200.00 a month), a first mate, fireman and a cook each paid $75.00 a month, an assistant fireman who earned $40.00, a steward who was paid $25.00, and six to seven deckhands. Yankee deckhands were paid $35.00, Sonorans and Indians paid $15.00 a month. All hands received board.


Steamers left Yuma every few days for the upriver landings carrying freight as well as passengers. Cabin fare was five dollars from Yuma to Castle Dome, fifteen dollars to Ehrenberg, twenty-eight dollars to Aubrey, thirty-five dollars to Fort Mohave and Hardyville and forty-five dollars to Eldorado Canyon. The deck fare was approximately two thirds of the cabin fare. Both cabin and deck passengers were give meals and a mattress and straw pillow for bedding. The cabins were located on the upper deck above the boiler and engine. They were always stuffy, noisy, and in the summer suffocatingly hot. Their occupants often abandoned them at night to spread their mattresses next to the second-class passengers. All the cabins offered were privacy and shelter from the occasional rain. However if you had a cabin you had the honor to eat at the captain's table, though most dinners consisted of little more than buttermilk biscuits, salt boiled beef or pork, and dry beans, which were called "Arizona strawberries". If you were lucky enough to be a passenger on the steamship Gila, William Sam, a Chinese cook, always prepared a tasty peach and plum pie. The river water, which was used for drinking, had to stand several days for the fine silt to settle. If you wanted something else to drink you had to bring it with you.


Over the next few decades steamboats plied up and down the river carrying passengers and freight. The steamships also carried coal and wood for the mines and the stamp mills in Eldorado Canyon. The steamboat virtually ended when the little sternwheeler Searchlight (perhaps the last steamboat to operate on the upper Colorado) was lost on the river in 1916.


The age of the steamship on the Colorado River was over.




Cocopah I


A stern-wheeler, this boat was 140 feet long with a 29-foot beam which could carry 10 tons, while drawing on 19 inches of water. It ran the river until 1867 when it was dismantled and converted into a boarding house.


Cocopah II


A stern-wheeler that was 147.5 feet long, 28 feed at the beam and displaced 231 tons. It has been said the Cocopah II made a record-breaking voyage from Aubrey City to Yuma in 4 days, a distance of 220 miles.


Colorado I


A stern-wheeler that was 120 feet long and could carry 60 tons of freight while drawing less then two feet of water. The boat operated from 1855 to 1862 when it was dismantled


Colorado II


Another stern-wheeler, the ship was 145 feet long, 19 feet at the beam and displaced 179 tons. The ship operated from 1862 to 1882.




This steamer worked the Colorado from 1864 to 1868 when it was dismantled. A stern-wheeler, it was 93 feet long with a 20-foot beam and carried 50 tons of freight. In 1866 the Arizona Legislature, in Prescott, passed a resolution thanking "Admiral" Robert Rogers, commander of the steamer Esmeralda and Captain William Gilmore for the successful accomplishment of the navigation of the Colorado River to Callville.




This little steamboat made the first official survey of the navigability of the Colorado River. The Explorer was iron hulled and 54 feet long and 13 feet wide at the beam. It was built in Philadelphia, shipped to the mouth of the Colorado and reassembled. For the journey upriver it was outfitted with a four-pound howitzer attached to the bow. The boat made it upriver to Explorer Rock where it hit a submerged rock and was severely damaged. The little steamer was floated downstream where it was sold as government surplus and converted into a barge which hauled garbage. It was listed as sunk, but in the 1920's its rusted hull ribs were found in one of the now dry channels of the Colorado River Delta.


General Jesup


The first commercially successful steamboat on the Colorado, and made the first trip up the Colorado to Eldorado Canyon, two months before the explorations by Captain Ives and the Explorer. Brought into service in 1854, this steamer was the first to navigate the Colorado all the way north to the area of present day Davis Dam. It was used to transport Lieutenant Edward F. Beale and his camels at Beale's Crossing in 1858. The steamer was a side-wheeler, 140 feet long and 17 feet at the beam, with a 70 horsepower boiler. It could carry 3 tons of freight.




This stern-wheeler had the distinction of being able to carry more cargo tonnage than any other steamboat on the Colorado. The boat was 149 feet long, 31 feet at the beam and displaced 236 tons. In 1899 the boat was refurbished, rebuilt and renamed the Cochan. As the Cochan, it displaced 234 tons and was shortened to 135 feet in length. This boat served the U.S Reclamation Service from 1909 to 1910 when it was dismantled. This ship carried Mrs. Martha Summerhays, author of the book "Vanished Arizona" which describes her life as the wife of a frontier soldier. She traveled on the Gila in September of 1874 when the temperatures ranged from 107 to 122 degrees. Some comments from her book follow:

"We had staterooms but could not remain in them long on account of the intense heat."

"The fare was meager, of course; fresh biscuits without butter, very salty boiled beef, and some canned vegetables, which were poor enough in those days."

"But that dining room was hot! The metal handles on the knives were uncomfortably warm to the touch; and even the wooden arms of the chairs felt as if they were going to ignite."

Mohave I


Built in 1862, this stern-wheeler was 135 feet long and 28 feed wide at the beam. The boat worked the river until it was dismantled in 1875. In July of 1864 the Mohave I set a record for the short time it took to go from Fort Yuma to Eldorado Canyon by making the trip in 10 days and 2 hours, a distance of 365 miles.


Mohave II


Launched in 1876 as the successor to the Mohave I, this steamboat was the pride of the fleet for many years. It was 6 inches longer than the Gila and the longest steamboat to ever run the river. The boat was a stern-wheeler 149.5 feet long, 31.5 feet at the beam and displaced 188 tons. The Mohave II had the distinction of being the only two stacker ever to run the river.


Nina Tilden


This stern-wheeler carried 120 tons of freight, was 97 feet long with a 22-foot beam and only drew 12 inches of water. It worked the river from 1864 until it was wrecked in 1874.




This small stern-wheeler was only 36 feet long and 6 feet at the beam. In 1905 it was put in service hauling freight between Mellen (Topock), Arizona and the mining settlements in and around the Bill Williams Fork. Its service was short lived as in 1905 the Retta hit a submerged rock and sank.




This little stern-wheeler was perhaps the last steamer to operate on the Colorado River. Launched at Needles, it operated from 1902 until 1916 at which time it was lost on the river. The Searchlight was 91 feet long, 18 feet at the beam and weighed in at 98 tons


St. Vallier


This stern-wheeler was launched at Needles in 1899. It was 74 feet long, 17 feet at the beam and listed at 92 tons. It sank in 1909.


Uncle Sam


The first actual steamship on the Colorado, this was launched in 1852 after having been brought by Captain Turnbull from San Francisco to the mouth of the Colorado by ship. A 65-foot long side-wheeler, it could carry only 35 tons of supplies with its twenty horsepower engine. It sank at the dock at Yuma in 1853. It did not go upriver from Yuma, but only traversed from the Gulf of California to Yuma in its few voyages.




The men that captained on the Colorado were a breed all their own. Many times they had to pilot their boats where there was not enough water for a frog to get in a good kick. Sometimes the river was so fast the back of the boats beat the front of the boats down river. The following are some of these men and the boats they commanded which made the river trade flourish over 50 years.


Capt. B. Gorman Nina Tilden
Capt. George Alonzo Johnson General Jesup
Capt. John A. "Jack" Mellon Gila and Mohave II
Capt. Mellon worked the Colorado for over forty years
Capt. Charles C. Overman Esmeralda
Capt. Isaac Polhamus Jr. Cocopah II, Colorado I, Mohave I, Mohave II
Capt. David Robinson. Explorer, Cocopah I
Capt. Robert T. Rogers. Esmeralda
Capt. Stephen Thorne. Colorado II
Capt. Thomas Trueworthy. Esmeralda
Capt. James Turnbull. Uncle Sam




We have all tried to talk like a pirate but how would we do on a steamboat, here is some terminology.


Arm: A spoke, as part of a paddle wheel

Ash Trough: A metal pan beneath the grates to catch the ashes from the firebox

Athwartship: Across the ship from side to side

Bar, Sandbar: A riverbed obstruction of sand or gravel

Beam: Width of the hull from inside the planking

Bell Hope: Line leading from the bell pull in the pilothouse to the engineer's position, or to the bell on deck.

Bight: A bend in the shoreline

Bit, Bitt: An anchor post on the forecastle for fastening head lines.

Bluff Reef: A solid sandbar with a vertical side so that deep water may flow close to the edge

Boiler: Metal water tank in which steam is generated by heat passing through interior ducts.

Boiler Deck: The deck above the boilers, supporting a cabin area.

Boiler Guard: A heavy frame on each side of the boiler area to reduce damage of an explosion

Boom: A timber supported by a mast and guys, used as a crane for moving freight and other objects

Breeching: Sheet metal connector between boilers and chimneys

Bridge: A platform forward on the upper deck; the station of the captain or master during landings and departures.

Bridle: An apparatus for holding the pilot wheel in place when the pilot must move away briefly

Bucket: The wooden blade of a paddle wheel

Bulkhead: An upright partition separating an area into compartments

Cabin: An interior or enclosed part of the vessel on any deck, containing sleeping rooms and a common room

Cable: A heavy line made of manila rope

Capstan: A rotating cylinder on the forward area of the main deck, used as a winch for drawing lines. Operated by steam in later vessels.

Catwalk: A narrow walkway

Chimney: Early term for a smokestack

Coaming: A curbing around the edge of a deck

Crank: A metal shaft attached to the pitman and paddle wheel shaft, changing linear to circular motion

Cutoff: A new channel formed when a river cuts through the neck of an oxbow bend

Cutoff Valve: A valve gear designed to cut steam off before the end of the piston stroke. Full stroke was required only for maximum power, as in getting underway

Davit: A crane for putting a lifeboat or other small boat in and out of the water

Deadwood: A body of timbers built up at either end of the keel to provide a fastening for other supporting members of the hull.

Doctor, Doctor Engine: An auxiliary engine for operating pumps and doing other work while the main engine is shut down

Draft: The depth to which the hull extends into the water

Draft Marks: Numbers painted on the hull to indicate the draft

Escapement or Escape Pipe: A pipe exhausting steam into the air above the top deck

Falls: A set of blocks and tackle

Fantail: The part of the main deck extending aft of the hull

Fender: A pad to prevent parts of the boat from rubbing against other objects

Firebox: The compartment in which wood is burned to heat water in the boilers

Flange: The hub of the paddle wheel to which the arms are attached

Flue: A duct conveying heat from the firebox to boiler, and into the chimney

Forecastle: The fore part of the main deck, often used as quarters for crew

Freeboard: The distance between the guards and the water line

Gangplank: A plank extending from the main deck to shore, or from boat to boat. If suspended by lines, it is called a stage

Grasshopper: A verb, meaning to move a vessel out of a shallow area by means of spars operated by the capstan

Guard: The portion of the main deck extending beyond the hull

Gunwale, Wale: The upper edge of the hull. The gunnel.

Guy, Guywire: A line or wire that steadies a boom, mast, chimney, or other part of a vessel

Harping: The upper contour or outline of the hull

Hatch: An opening in the hold through which cargo is passed

Hawser: A manila line used in mooring or towing

Hog Chain: An iron rod or chain passing over struts from bow to stern, to improve rigidity and prevent the sagging of the hull.

Hold: The space enclosed by the hull, generally for cargo

Hurricane Deck: In the early period the deck above the boiler deck. Now the lowest roofed deck.

Hull: The shell or main body of the vessel

Ice Shield: Metal sheathing on the hull, protecting the bow from ice both above and below the water line

Jackstaff: A mast at the bow from which an emblem or insignia is flown

Kedge, Kedge Anchor: A small anchor dropped ahead of a ship, to pull it forward by means of a line

Keelson: A line of timbers laid over the keel to which the floor timbers are fastened. The bulkhead running fore and aft in the center of the shop. Pronounced "keelson"

Kevel: An iron or wooden cleat attached to a deck, for fastening lines

Knee: An angular timber fastening the beams of the hull to the sides or timbers

Lead, Leadline: A weighted cord marked off to determine water depth

Line: Any rope, cable, or wire, or any pipe on the vessel

Main Deck: The first deck, upon which the boiler and engine are installed

Manhole: An opening in a boiler from which it may be inspected or cleaned

Mast: An upright timber or pole

Mud Clerk: Assistant clerk whose duties ashore often gave him muddy feet

Mud Drum: A container beneath the boilers to collect sediment

Oxbow: A U-shaped river bend that has produced a narrow neck of land that may eventually be cut through by the current

Packet Boat: A vessel for hire, carrying passengers and freight, and perhaps mail, equipped for overnight trips

Paddle Wheel: A wheel fitted with paddles or "buckets" that propels a steamboat

Painter: A light line used to secure a small boat

Pillow Block: The support for a shaft bearing

Pilothouse: A compartment atop the texas, usually aft of the chimneys, from which the pilot steers and directs the vessel

Pitman Rod: A rod connecting a vibrating element to a rotating one. Hence, the rod connecting the piston with the crankshaft between the paddle wheels

Planter: A snag that has one end fixed in the riverbed

Point: An arm of land extending into a river, affecting the current and creating a sandbar

Port: The left side of a ship, looking forward

Reach: A straight stretch of a river

Rosin: A powdered forest product, made by the distillation of turpentine, used in the firebox to aid the combustion of wet or green wood

Rudder: The hinged fin or plate at the stern that governs the direction of the vessel's movement

Rudder Post: A vertical member that holds the rudder

Running Lights: A pair of lanterns, one red and one green, mounted high on the chimneys as navigational aids for other vessels

Safety Barge: A boat towed by a steamboat to provide a means of escape for passengers and crew in case of accident

Sawyer: A tree fastened in the riverbed, its trunk and branches bobbing or sawing in the stream

Scantling: A board used in framing; thus any board not considered a plank

Scape Pipe: Escapement pipe

Scupper: A deck drain

Sheer: The curve of the deck as viewed from the side

Shoal, Shoal Water: Shallows, or water of little depth

Skeg: A fin placed ahead of the rudder to prevent lateral motion of the hull

Skylight: A row of windows or transoms at the top of a cabin to allow for sunlight and ventilation

Slough: A side channel or inlet from a tributary of a river

Sounding: A measurement of water depth, often called out to the pilot by the mate or other crewmen

Spar: A substantial wooden pole or timber with many uses, including the sparring or "grasshoppering" of the vessel out of shoal water

Speaking Tube: A line of pipe connecting the pilothouse and engine room. Gutter pipe was normally used.

Stack: The smokestack, formerly called the chimney

Stack Lantern: A running light

Stage: A platform or gangplank serving as a bridge to shore during landings, especially one suspended by lines

Stanchion: An upright brace supporting a deck, rail, etc

Starboard: The right side of a ship, looking forward

Stateroom: A sleeping compartment for officers or passengers

Stirrup: A double bolt, with nuts, that clamps the paddle or bucket to the arm of the paddle wheel

Steersman: A sailor who operates the wheel in the pilothouse, subject to the commands of the pilot

Stem: A timber to which the sides of the hull are joined at the bow

Stern: The rear part of the hull, to which the rudder is hinged

Striker: An apprentice crewman, especially an engineer

Stroke: The distance traveled by the piston during one complete revolution of the wheel

Texas, Texas Deck: The texas (never capitalized) is the topmost cabin, usually for officers, which rests on the texas deck

Tiller: A horizontal lever that turns the rudder

Tiller Rope: A line attached to the tiller by which the rudder is controlled from the pilothouse

Torch Basket: A metal container on a pole, hung at an angle over the water and containing burning wood chips or other fuel for nighttime illumination, especially at landings.

Tow: A vessel or barge being pushed or pulled by another boat.

Tow-Head: An island covered with thick vegetation, such as willow or cottonwood saplings

Transom: The frame or vertical planking at the stern of the hull

Tree Nail, Trennel: A wooden spike or dowel used to fasten timbers together

Tween Deck: A low deck between the main and boiler decks, carrying passengers or freight.

Wheelhouse: The casing around the paddle wheel on a side-wheel vessel

Wind Reef: A pattern on the surface of the water, created by the wind, simulating the presence of an underwater reef

Wood Boat: A barge carrying cordwood, meeting steamboats on a prearranged basis to speed up refueling

Woodhawk: A riverside woodcutter, offering cordwood for sale to passing steamboats

Yawl: A small boat, towed or carried

The following sources were used to put this keepsake together and provide direction to any Clamper educated enough who would like to read further or locate information on the topic of this keepsake.

The History of Mohave County to 1912 by Dan W. Messersmith ; Mohave County Historical Society, Kingman, Arizona

Feud On The Colorado by Arthur Woodward, Westernlore Press, 1955

San Diego Biographies; San Diego Historical Society

Steamboats on the Colorado River 1852-1916

To Arizona By Sea, 1850-1877 by John Haskell Kemble, in Brand Book, #10

Vanished Arizona by Martha Summerhayes; University of Nebraska Press


Virtual Museum of San Francisco-website

Voyages of the Steamboat Yellow Stone by Donald Jackson; University of Oklahoma Press


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